Egyptian Warrior looks the pick for O'Brien
Aidan O’Brien will saddle his first National Hunt runners in almost eight years when the champion flat trainer gives his daughter Sarah the leg-up on Egyptian Warrior in a bumper at Punchestown today.
The jockey is pursuing a first ever winner and her mount is certainly bred to be useful, being a full brother to the current ante-post Derby favourite Kingsbarns.
O’Brien also runs Shield in the race and this €55,000 yearling purchase will be ridden by Kate Harrington.
However, it is Egyptian Warrior who remains a possible starter in the Weatherbys Champion Bumper at Cheltenham and can prove today the former multiple champion-jumps trainer hasn’t lost his National Hunt touch.
Otherwise it looks very much “as you were” with the all-powerful Willie Mullins team looking to hold a number of good chances.
Un de Sceaux is their latest French recruit to start in the two-mile maiden hurdle and this winner of his two bumpers in France last year should be well-schooled.
Mullins gives Sizing Brisbane a debut in the other bumper and this €65,000 purchase is bred to be useful, being a half-brother to the high-class Venalmar.
Strictly on ratings, Chiltern Hills faces a task in the mares maiden hurdle but any slight improvement in ground will be to her advantage.
Sumkindasuprstar found one too good on his return to hurdles at Gowran on Saturday but an extra quarter mile today could well see him step up.